Serial burglar caught after his car’s tracking device put him at the scene
Gary Bentley, 42, was caught after footage from a mobile phone and the tracking system on his Alfa Romeo provided crucial evidence
A ‘prolific and brazen’ burglar has been jailed for more than three years after he was framed by his own car.
Gary Bentley, 42, broke in and stole valuables from three houses in May 2019 – but was caught by police after a built-in tracking device on his Alfa Romeo, designed to deter thieves, linked him to the scene of the crimes.
On 20 May 2019, Bentley broke into a house in Sandown Park, Tunbridge Wells where he took cash and jewellery and left the house in an disheveled state.
Four days later, he drove his car to a property in Hastings Road, Pembury and forced open a door, stealing items including a bank card, watch, jewellery and metal tankards.
He was sentenced to three years and six months in prison at Maidstone Crown Court.
He used the bank card to buy tobacco, food and fuel at a number of local shops, restaurants and petrol stations.
The burglar committed a further break-in at an address in Chalklet Lane, Pembury on 28 May where he stole cash and four watches.
Detectives initially identified him as the culprit after they saw footage recorded on a mobile phone belonging to a witness and arrested him two days later.
After police checked the tracker on his car, it provided crucial evidence that linked it to the locations, dates and times of the crimes.
Bentley pleaded guilty after being charged with three burglaries and four counts of fraud.
He was sentenced to three years and six months in prison at Maidstone Crown Court last Thursday.
Chief Inspector Peter Steenhuis, Tunbridge Wells District Commander for Kent Police, said the serial burglar had shown ‘little if any remorse for his crimes’ which were ‘devastating’ for victims.
He said: ‘Bentley is a prolific and brazen offender, who entered people’s homes in broad daylight to steal whatever he could find.
‘These type of crimes are quite simply devastating for victims, who arrive home to find their properties turned upside-down.
‘While Bentley has shown little, if any remorse for his actions, it is at least reassuring that a prison sentence will now protect residents of Tunbridge Wells from his criminal activities.’